Episode 81 – The Good Friends tremble in the Dead of Night



We’re back, and after a few episodes about Call of Cthulhu, we’re talking about Dead of Night, a horror RPG that is largely tentacle-free. That’s not to say that you that you can’t do Lovecraftian horror with Dead of Night, which is a set of mechanics for emulating horror films, but the tentacles are purely optional. If you can think of a monster, murderer or supernatural menace that would render the protagonists of a horror film into red, meaty paste, Dead of Night can bring it to life.

Dead of Night Cover

This little chap’s so hungry he’s chewed up the logo.

Described as “the roleplaying game of campfire tales, slasher movies and b-movie horror”, Dead of Night is a light, simple system designed for one-shots, and can easily be explained to new players on the fly. You can create a player character in a couple of minutes, which is a good thing, given that they’re known in the game text as “victims”. We’ve found that it works well for anything from manic comedy-horror to dark, serious games that drip with atmosphere and blood.

Dead of Night 1

And possibly some other, less identifiable fluids.

Dead of Night is the brainchild of good friend of the Good Friends Andrew Kenrick, and came out of the burst of British RPG self-publishing known as the Collective Endeavour, that gave us such games as Hot War3:16 Carnage Amongst the StarsContendersDuty & Honour and Umläut: Game of Metal. I was recently asked in an interview whether I thought self-publishing was a worthwhile pursuit for RPG designers, and these games were the reason I answered with an enthusiastic yes.

Dead of Night 2

Enthusiasm pictured for reference.

All the pictures in these notes come from the second edition of Dead of Night, which was laid-out and illustrated by the incredibly talented Paul Bourne. This edition features some of Paul’s best work, especially in the form of the many fake horror film posters he spread throughout the book like the viscera of so many victims. We’ve raved about Paul’s work before, back when we discussed Hot War, and this is the perfect opportunity to do so again. Paul now works full-time for Cubicle 7, and you will notice his distinctive handiwork in the layout of many of their books.

Dead of Night 3

I’m sure they’ll let him out to work on more film posters one day.

Posted in Roleplaying Games, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | 4 Comments

Call of Cthulhu Explained – Part 2: Creating Investigator, Optional Extras (video)

In part 1 Paul looked at how to create Investigators for Call of Cthulhu. This episode looks at the optional rules for character creation. 

Posted in Call of Cthulhu, Video | 2 Comments

Episode 80: The Good Friends get pulped by Pulp Cthulhu



We’re back, and we’re continuing our run of episodes inspired by the print release of Call of Cthulhu 7th edition by taking a look at Pulp Cthulhu. While it’s only available as a backer-only PDF at the moment, Pulp Cthulhu should be available for purchase within days and in shops later this year. This is the culmination of a long, winding journey that started all the way back in 2001!

2001 ape

I’m not saying that 2001 was a long time ago, but this is what we looked then.

Our discussion starts off with an overview of what we mean by pulp, how this compares to the more purist mode of play most people associate with Call of Cthulhu and a bit of debate about whether they are really totally different things. I honestly thought that we’d argue more about this last point, but we all seem to agree. We’ll have to find something else to get us bickering.


Yup, that should do it.

The bulk of the episode is taken up by a brief overview of what you can expect to find in Pulp Cthulhu, an explanation of what sets it apart from standard Call of Cthulhu, and discussion of our experiences of playing and running the game. Although the PDF is only just on the cusp of release, we each spent much of last year running Pulp Cthulhu, to playtest both the rules and The Two-Headed Serpent, the campaign we have co-written for Pulp Cthulhu, which will be released by Chaosium in the not-too-distant future.

Pulp Cthulhu

And, once again, there is singing. As I mentioned in the show notes for our two recent episodes about the development of Call of Cthulhu 7th edition, the fact that these episodes were recorded last year meant we had to delay our usual thanks to our Patreon backers until we returned to the present day. Well, here we are! There are three sets of sung thanks to tease your ears and horrify your sensibilities. We shall try not to let them build up again.


We’ve seen what can happen.

This episode also sees the return of our new Ask Jackson segment. If you have a question that you would like us to pose to the spirit of Jackson Elias, please let us know via Google+, Facebook, Twitter or email.

Posted in Call of Cthulhu, Roleplaying Games, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | 2 Comments

Call of Cthulhu Explained – Part 1: Creating an Investigator (video)

Following up on the short series of five videos for the Call of Cthulhu Quick-Start Rules, Paul has made what will hopefully be the first of many videos exploring the new 7th Edition rules.

If you are new to Call of Cthulhu, the Quick-Start Rules are a great place to start – you can get a copy here. The accompanying videos are each short and fast-paced, and if you have trouble catching what’s said, then click on the Youtube closed captions button (cc). Thanks should also be given to Ishii Tomoki for translating the subtitles into Japanese – you can find the Japanese versions here.

Posted in Call of Cthulhu | 1 Comment

Episode 79 – The Good Friends reveal more of the secret history of Call of Cthulhu 7th edition



We’re back with the conclusion of our discussion about how Call of Cthulhu 7th edition came about. Once again, we’re joined by Mike Mason, line editor of Call of Cthulhu, who co-authored  7th edition along with our very own Paul Fricker. I’m saying “once again” like we met up again to continue the discussion, but this is really the continuation of the long chat that started in episode 78. We cut it in half because no one in their right mind wants to listen to us natter on for two and a half hours non-stop.


We also wondered if each half would grow into a complete episode, like earthworms are meant to. Or maybe fill our gardens with rich humus. Something like that, anyway.

And again, we should warn you that we recorded these episodes in May of 2015, when our recording equipment was more primitive. At this time, we believed that the printing of 7th edition was imminent, so please try not to judge too harshly if you hear us getting that wrong. Our decision to hold off releasing these episodes until the books were with backers has meant that they have been languishing on Paul’s computer for a year, and we’re happy to finally get the chance to release them. We’re even happier that the books are now in backers’ hands, and will soon be available for retail.

Pulp Cthulhu

And now this beast has crawled up from the depths too! We plan to discuss it in the very near future.

We have a number of new Patreon backers to thank, but with these being old recordings, we shan’t be able to do so until next episode. On the bright side, we will be singing at least twice next time. There may even be percussion, if Paul can work out how to make use of our ill-advised experiments with dice-stuffed improvised maracas.

Posted in Call of Cthulhu, Roleplaying Games, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | 2 Comments

Episode 78 – The Good Friends reveal the secret history of Call of Cthulhu 7th edition



We’re back… In fact, we’re all the way back to May of 2015. Around a year ago, when we believed the print release of Call of Cthulhu 7th edition was imminent, we spent a day chatting with Mike Mason about how 7th edition had come about, on the assumption we would release the discussion within a month or two. The events that followed now make this seem a little ill-informed.

Mike and Paul at Gencon

Paul and Mike demonstrate how to resolve grapples without using the resistance table

Obviously a lot has changed in the last year, including the shipping dates of the books, the management of Chaosium and all our recording equipment. Our decision to hold off the release of this discussion until the books were in backers’ hands means that some of the references are dated.  Still, the discussion is relevant, and it only seemed right to wait.

Call of Cthulhu

Hey, if Cthulhu can wait for strange aeons, we can manage a year or so.

But the stars are right at last. Backers all over the world have reported strange things turning up on their doorsteps, and so far no one has been shot in the head. In fact, it seemed like everyone was getting their books except for Paul, Matt and Me. We’ve spent the past couple of months following ships via satellite, reading Kickstarter updates and using the DPD website to watch a nice man from named Peter drive around Buckinghamshire. Happily, they turned up yesterday, as if summoned by the imminent release of this episode.

7th ed books

Now there’s the small matter of finding shelf space for them all.

Being old recordings, these are missing some features like the new Ask Jackson segment and shout-outs to our Patreon backers. These will resume as of episode 80, when we make our way back to 2016. Until then, thank you to everyone who has backed us or raised their pledge level recently! We have some singing to do.


Posted in Call of Cthulhu, Kickstarter, Roleplaying Games, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | Leave a comment

Episode 77 – The Good Friends dice with death



We’re back, and we’re staring death straight in its empty, pitiless eyes. This episode is our discussion of death in games. Well, specifically it’s a look at the different ways we can handle the deaths of player characters, the approaches to death taken by various RPGs, character deaths we’ve found particularly memorable and suggestions for ways you can make death meaningful and interesting. So, a real bundle of laughs.


At least the after-show party was rollicking.

All this morbid introspection was prompted by listener Tim Vert, who sent us a message via Patreon to ask us our thoughts on death in RPGs. We are always open to suggestions from listeners, as long as they are entertaining, anatomically feasible and legal in the United Kingdom (or at least carry little risk of us getting caught).


At least the long arm of the law tends to have a bit more meat on it.

In fact, this episode also sees us trying out a new segment inspired by another listener. Back in March, Tom McGrenery used Google+ to ask for our advice on an eldritch problem. The discussion thread this spawned amused us so much that we thought we’d try a variant of it on the podcast. You’ll find our first attempt, titled Ask Jackson, at the end of this episode. Obviously we have no wisdom of our own to share, but we are able to channel the spirit of Jackson Elias, and he is only too willing to offer advice from beyond the grave (between you and me, it can get a bit irritating, especially when he starts criticising my driving). If you have any questions you’d like us to pass on, please ask them via Google+, Facebook, Twitter or email.

L0014318 The dance of death: the antiquary's last will & testament. C Credit: Wellcome Library, London. Wellcome Images images@wellcome.ac.uk http://wellcomeimages.org The dance of death: the antiquary's last will & testament. Coloured aquatint by T. Rowlandson, 1816. 1816 By: Thomas RowlandsonPublished: - Copyrighted work available under Creative Commons Attribution only licence CC BY 4.0 http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Or simply manifest in our homes at night. We’re used to it.

If all goes according to plan, our next few episodes will be somewhat unusual. We shall drop shuddering and abhorrent hints on social media soon.

Posted in Roleplaying Games, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | 2 Comments

Google Play


Google have recently extended their Google Play service to include podcasts. While we would like to offer The Good Friends of Jackson Elias through their service, we have not yet been able to do so.

Google Play

The podcast service is only currently available to subscribers in the USA and Canada. For reasons that defy comprehension, this also means that publishers outside these countries cannot submit their podcasts to Google. Until this frustratingly parochial policy changes, listeners in North America will only be able to use the service to listen to North American podcasts.

There is no projected date for when the service may accept podcasts from the UK yet. We will list The Good Friends of Jackson Elias there as soon as we can. Until then, you can still subscribe via iTunes, Subscribe on Android or any podcast app that can read our RSS feed directly.

Posted in Site News, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | Leave a comment

Kickstarter Update: April 2016

A little later than planned, but here we are!

It’s a new month, and there’s some new Kickstarter projects to back. The first of these, I’ve been looking forward to for a while. The second was worth it to see the look on Scott’s face when I told him about it.

Unknown Armies: Third Edition


As I’ve mentioned before, Unknown Armies is one of my all-time favourite RPGs. I was excited to hear that it was coming to Kickstarter and signed up to the Atlas Games mailing list to keep me informed of when it went live.

To begin with, one of the nice perks for this project is that when you become a backer, you can go to Update #1 and get access to the draft files for the three books that form the core set of the game, immediately. I’m yet to do this, because I don’t find it particularly easy reading text off a screen – this is why I much prefer my dead tree versions – but I’ve picked some bits.

It appears that there’s been quite an overhaul of the rules and updated setting. The mechanics have changed a fair bit, and while there’s a handful of familiar Avatars alongside a new bunch, all the Adept schools are new. That was quite a surprise.

The physical products on offer through the Kickstarter are very pretty indeed. The core game is now divided between three books. Initially, I thought this was going to mirror the “Street, Global and Cosmic” structure from Second Edition, but that’s not the case. Book One: Play is the player’s book containing the rules (including Avatar and Adept schools, etc.), Book Two: Run is the GM’s book (giving advice on how to run the game), and Book Three: Reveal is the encyclopedia of occult knowledge (i.e. lots of setting material entries, including references to material that was in the previous editions). Having read through a few entries in Reveal, I’m very excited!

In addition to the physical books, there’s a Deluxe set that has a magnetic slip-case that unfolds to become the GM Screen. I’m having trouble trying to visualize exactly how that’s going to work but it sounds good. There’s also a set of UA dice from Q-Workshop, that come in sets of three, with a “333” logo on one side – nice touch.

As part of the stretch goals for the project, as it funded quickly, there are two digital-only supplements being released as well – Book Four: Expose (described so far only as new material and content), and Book Five: Mine (rituals, organizations, archetypes, and magickal phenomena).

The only things I can say I’m disappointed about are that there are no physical rewards on offer through the Kickstarter that will not be available later, which could put off people from backing (especially as the postage costs are pretty horrendous from the USA – another thing that stings), and that Books Four and Five are only digital. As mentioned above, I like my dead tree. Even if they do print-on-demand, I’d rather have that than stare at a computer screen.

There’s a few high-level tiers, but they’ve pretty much all sold out within hours of going live, that get a few extra bonuses (e.g. photo in the book, handmade postcards, being able to determine what goes in parts of Book Five, etc.). These include, at the highest levels, a set that includes one of a set of two ouija-board-esque pieces of art by Greg Stolze himself. I resisted those, but am happy to be a Patron of Book Five.

As of the time of writing, the project has 12 days left to run and will close on Friday, April 29th.

And now for Scott’s favourite… 🙂

The C is for Cthulhu Coloring Book

C3First there was the Alphabet book, then the Plush toy, and now the coloring book.

This features some line-art versions of the illustrations in the Alphabet book that your little cultists can bring to life with colours out of space.

Personally, I think it’s pretty cute. Yep, not a phrase a purist (or Scott) would use, but I like what they’ve done so far. I backed the previous two projects (and even won a caption contest on the Plush project to get my rewards doubled!) so definitely wanted in on this one. As if I needed any extra incentive…

C4If they hit $20,000 (which is a little under $4,000 away at the time of writing) they will unlock the Black Cthulhu Plush, to make a fourth colour choice to the entire range.

Well, I’m a completest. I want my black plush!

I think these plushes are probably the most kid-friendly of the ones released so far. A perfect toy for the cultists of tomorrow to snuggle up to while they make their way to the Dreamlands.

As of the time of writing, the project has 13 days left to run and will close on Saturday, April 30th.



Posted in Call of Cthulhu | Leave a comment

Episode 76 – The Good Friends look into the many faces of Cthulhu



We’re back and we’re looking at all the different ways in which people use Call of Cthulhu at the gaming table. Conveniently enough, we have Call of Cthulhu line developer Mike Mason on hand to help us with this. Between the four of us, we probably have over 100 years of Call of Cthulhu experience, so we’ve seen a fair few styles of play first-hand.


Not to mention the rise and fall of civilisations, the fading of ancient days, and the passing into folly of all human endeavour.

For a game about such a niche sub-genre as Lovecraftian horror, Call of Cthulhu has proved uncannily flexible, much like a shoggoth in a gimp suit. We’ve seen it used for mysteries, survival horror, dark comedies, emotional dramas and many games that bear no relation at all to Lovecraft. In our discussion, we spend a bit of time trying to work out whether this anything inherent to the game, or simply because it was the first major horror RPG.


Admittedly, I’m now more interested in working out how to get a shoggoth into a gimp suit.

The latter part of the discussion includes a potted history of the Kult of Keepers, who pretty much defined Call of Cthulhu convention gaming in the UK for the early part of this century. It’s fair to say that without the Kult of Keepers, there would be no Call of Cthulhu 7th edition, Cthulhu Britannica or even the Good Friends of Jackson Elias. With that in mind, we hope you’ll excuse our little diversion.


Don’t they all look young? Well, maybe not if this is the first time you’ve seen them, but I certainly did a couple of double-takes.

We’re a little light on shout-outs this episode, not for a lack of backers, but simply because Paul’s Internet connection has failed him. This stopped us doing our usual trick of recording a bunch of segments the week before release and editing them in at the last minute. We promise to thank everyone outstanding in the next episode! In the meantime, we hope the copy of the first issue of The Blasphemous Tome that should be appearing on backers’ doorsteps around now will go some way toward making up for this.

Posted in Call of Cthulhu, Roleplaying Games, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | 1 Comment

The Blasphemous Tome issue 1 is in the post

Matt, Paul and I spent last Thursday evening stuffing and addressing envelopes, and Paul popped most of the 100-odd copies of The Blasphemous Tome in the post on Friday. We’ve heard that they have started turning up in people’s homes, or at least that’s what we take the screams to mean. We have no idea how long the international deliveries will take, or whether secret orders within post offices across the world have warded against its eldritch secrets passing through their hands, but all being well, it should be less than a week. If you are a backer, and haven’t received your copy by then, please check that your address details are up to date in Patreon. Paul has tried contacting everyone with incomplete addresses, but he is still waiting for a few of you to reply.

BT1 Cover

This odd little volume has been a delight to produce. It’s largely light-hearted fun, but we’ve put a few more substantial articles in there, including discussions of games we’ve enjoyed recently, some film reviews and a scenario of small-town Lovecraftian horror that ended up being about twice as long as we’d planned. In fact, the whole publication is about 50% longer than we’d anticipated. Apparently we’re as bad at being succinct on the page as we are on the podcast.

Issue 1 ToC

Issue 1 Table of Contents

The layout of the zine may strike younger readers as eccentric, or perhaps abhorrent. Matt, who laid it out, complained entertainingly at every step of the process. For good or ill, we set out to make the Tome look like an artefact of the 1980s, slipped through the cracks of time and deposited, blinking, into a strange and harsh new age. I know just how it feels. Achieving this involved using a limited number of fonts (mainly Courier, which only made Matt cry harder), keeping the layout as basic as possible, and artificially introducing strange angles and blemishes to make it appear that the whole thing had been hand-assembled using razor blades and paste. Matt has been drinking heavily since, and now only communicates with Paul and me through enthusiastically incoherent expletives.


Matt has dubbed the process he uses to replicate the old-school layout “shitification”.

As well as all the backers who made this possible, we would also like to thank Jonathan Wyke, John Ossoway and Lucy Fricker for providing some excellent artwork! We will start on issue 2 late this year, with a view to releasing it in March/April 2017. If you have any ideas for articles you’d like to see, please let us know.


Posted in Site News, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias, Unholy Artefacts | 2 Comments

Episode 75 – The Good Friends sing along to The Music of Erich Zann



We’re back, and we’re talking about everyone’s favourite eldritch curtain-twitcher, Erich Zann. Lovecraft’s short story, The Music of Erich Zann, is a highpoint of his early career. More importantly, it is a rare example of a work that all three of us agree about. The sanity-blasting revelations at the end of the story are nothing compared to such weirdness!


And almost as uncanny as finding a picture of Erich Zann in which he plays a viol, and not a violin!

This is the shortest Lovecraft story we’ve discussed so far, barely a tenth of the length of The Shadow Out of Time. This has allowed us to fit the entire discussion into a single episode, including the usual mentions of adaptations and ideas for stealing elements for our games.  Admittedly, the discussion on adaptations is brief; while The Music of Erich Zann has been adapted a number of times, it has largely birthed short films or somewhat freer musical interpretations, both of which are tricky to discuss for different reasons.

Screenshot 2016-03-29 at 18.17.09

Every time we tried to play an example, Paul’s study window revealed an endless vista of cosmic awfulness. Or Buckingham. I get confused.

And speaking of musical adaptations of Lovecraft, we make mention of the ongoing IndieGoGo crowdfunding campaign by The Darkest of the Hillside Thickets, raising money to record their fifth album, The Dukes of Alhazred. Hell, it’s worth giving them money for that title alone!


Also, those shoggoths won’t feed themselves. Or they will. That may be worse.


There is also some discussion of sloths, evisceration and tea, which needs to be illustrated with a photograph. We’re not sure if this makes things any clearer, but it certainly makes them weirder. This is usually the best we can hope for.


If people are willing to pay a premium for coffee beans that have passed through a civet cat, tea made from sloth urine must be a sure thing!

Posted in Call of Cthulhu, H.P. Lovecraft, Horror Films, Horror Stories, Roleplaying Games, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | Tagged | 6 Comments

iTunes review page

itunes logo

We now have a shiny new page on the site that gathers our iTunes reviews from across the globe and puts them all in one place.

It’s wonderful to see how many people have taken the time to write positive reviews, and we are grateful to all of you!

If anyone else is moved to share your thoughts in the form of a review, we would love to see it! Just pop over to the Apple site or fire up your iTunes client and let us know what you think.

Posted in Site News, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | 2 Comments

Episode 74 – The Good Friends lose themselves in INLAND EMPIRE



We’re back, and we’re taking a look at David Lynch‘s 2006 film, INLAND EMPIRE. This is a strange, strange film, even by Lynch’s standards, and unravelling it almost proved too much for the three of us. Happily we were able to draft in some extra help, in the eldritch form of Call of Cthulhu line editor and fellow Lynch fan, Mike Mason.


Artist’s impression.

INLAND EMPIRE is not a film that lends itself to being summarised, so we took a different approach this time. Each of us chose a few scenes, characters or other elements that impressed us and tried to explain why. The order in which we discuss the scenes is not quite the same as that in which they appear in the film, but this seems oddly appropriate.


Follow us this way for a full explanation.

As ever, we take time to discuss elements we can steal for gaming, and INLAND EMPIRE proved a surprisingly rich source of inspiration. Short of serving magic mushroom pizza to our players, however, nothing is likely to have quite the same impact as the film itself.


Or maybe playing some kind of rabbit-themed LARP.

Be warned: there is a lot of singing in this episode. The good news is that Mike has had training in this kind of thing, and tried to lead us into new areas of musical expression. The bad news is that this doesn’t mean that the rest of us have learned how to sing.


“Brutal fucking murder on the ears.”

Our recent cut-off for The Blasphemous Tome issue 1 inspired a record number of Patreon backers. We have had to stagger our thanks somewhat to avoid giving half the episode over to shout-outs. Rest assured that the rest will be in the next episode, along with more singing. Still no death-metal ukulele, though.

Posted in Horror Films, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | 2 Comments

French review of the World War Cthulhu line


French RPG legend Tristan Lhomme has posted an amazing overview of Cubicle 7’s World War Cthulhu line, including detailed reviews of all the books we’ve published to date. He’s even managed to cover World War Cthulhu London, which has been out for less than a week!

The article is in French. If that’s a barrier, Google Translate does a decent job these days.

Posted in Call of Cthulhu, Review, Roleplaying Games | Leave a comment

World War Cthulhu London


Another project that the three of us collaborated on has just been released!

World War Cthulhu London  is a crossover between Cubicle 7‘s World War Cthulhu and Cthulhu Britannica lines, bringing the alien horror of the Mythos to a London already suffering the very human horrors of the Second World War.

London 1941. The blackout reigns. Only the burning, bombed-out buildings and raking searchlights defy the War Office order that has cast the city into darkness.

The nightly rain of German bombs brings death and destruction to the capital. By day you try to not talk about the looming threat of invasion, and how you miss having belly full of real food. At night you huddle in the Tube and sing songs to distract you from the inky darkness.

But there are far more terrifying threats in that darkness than mere German bombs: Twisted and ancient forms released from their long-forgotten prisons; inhuman scavengers drawn by the carnage to feast; depraved cults with demented plans to take advantage of the chaos…

Create investigators belonging to N’s Auxiliaries, civilians recruited to battle the agents of the Mythos threatening the Home Front
• Learn all about life during the London Blitz and the threats – both Mythos and mundane – that lurk in the blackout
• Discover how London landmarks have been affected by the war
• Construct effective scenarios with the London Blitz as your backdrop
• Explore wartime London with three complete, pre-written scenarios

The book (with free PDF) is now available for pre-order, and the PDF is on sale separately at DriveThruRPG.

Posted in Call of Cthulhu, Roleplaying Games | 6 Comments

Golden Geek Awards 2015



Voting has just opened for the Golden Geek Awards, and The Good Friends of Jackson Elias has been nominated for Best RPG Podcast!

If you like the podcast and are in a position to vote (there are restrictions, explained in the post), we’d be ever so grateful if you did.

Posted in Site News, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | Leave a comment

Another new Patreon Goal

Jackson Elias

New Patreon reward for the $170 milestone

We’ve got 99 items but a fish ain’t one

We had a great suggestion come out of our last call with Patreon backers. Our plan is to release an ongoing line of short books of inspiration for GMs of Lovecraftian, other horror or generally weird RPGs. The working title is Cthulhu’’s Catalogues of R’’lyeh Useful Things, but good sense may prevail between now and publication.

Each book will be written around a theme, such as locations, NPCs or artefacts, containing 99 short descriptions that you can use to get your creative juices flowing or just throw into a game on the fly.

We’’re not entirely sure how often we’’ll put these books out, but our goal is to issue at least a couple every year. We will be selling them online, but all our Patreon backers will get them for free once we hit the $170 milestone.

The Specifics

  • $1 – You will get a PDF copy of each new catalogue as we release it.
  • $3 – You will get a PDF copy of each new catalogue as we release it, as well as PDFs of any existing catalogues.
  • $5 – You will get a print copy of each new catalogue as we release it, as well as PDFs of any existing catalogues.

We are busy working on the first book (Lovecraftian Locations), and expect to release it in mid-to-late summer.

Posted in Site News, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | 1 Comment

Episode 73 – The Good Friends dissect Cthulhu



We’re back, and we’re taking a whistle-stop tour through what’s new in Call of Cthulhu 7th edition. While we’ve done episodes on some of the new mechanics before, and Paul has recorded a series of videos summarising the 7th edition quick-start rules, we realised that we’d never actually given an overview of what has changed. Given how often this question comes up on various forums, it seems like a major oversight.

Opera Eyes

We’re doing what we can to avoid missing the obvious from now on.

We’re hoping that this will be a relatively timely episode. The latest update from Chaosium, around a fortnight ago, was that the 7th edition books have all been printed and have started their long journeys to Chaosium’s distribution centres in the USA, Australia and Europe. This means that the books should be delivered to backers some time in the spring. Of course, this assumes that the container ships aren’t captured by pirates, subjected to savage meteorological anomalies or, in the case of the Australian shipment, pulled beneath the waters of the Pacific after getting a little too close to R’lyeh.

Call of Cthulhu

Just because your name is on the cover doesn’t mean they’re all yours!

We have recorded a few episodes about how 7th edition came to be, which we’re been saving until the books are in backers’ hands (or whatever organs you use for grasping). Paul is also considering a fresh series of videos covering the main rules. Even so, we are still open to the idea of talking about specific aspects of the game on the podcast, if this is of interest to listeners. Should you have any such requests, please let us know here, via social media or by implanting the thoughts in our brains using ancient and terrible magics.


Or you could place them there more directly.

As we mentioned last week, yesterday was the cut-off for Patreon backers to receive the first issue of The Blasphemous Tome. This led to an overwhelming amount of support on Patreon, which has left us gob-smacked and extremely grateful. We recorded a whole bunch of shout-outs and two sets of sung thanks over the weekend, but Paul hasn’t had time to edit them all yet, so they will appear in episode 74. This also means we may sing three times in that episode. If this doesn’t cause a rift in space and time, allowing our ancient masters to break free and devour humanity, nothing will.

Posted in Call of Cthulhu, Roleplaying Games, The Good Friends of Jackson Elias | 20 Comments

Kickstarter Update: February 2016

I’ve mentioned it on the show a couple of times, and now it’s finally here!


The Kult: Divinity Lost Kickstarter is live!

We discussed Kult back in Episode 31 of the show. This is the long-awaited 4th edition that is using a variation of the Apocalypse World game mechanics, rather than the clunky, sanity-shattering rules of previous editions.

The Kickstarter had a 95,000 Swedish Krona goal to be fully funded (Approx $11,178 / €11,133 / £8,015 at the current exchange rate). It hit that goal in 12 minutes. It seems to be a trend with RPGs making a come-back, as the highly successful 7th Sea Section Edition Kickstarter has shown. That funded in 7 minutes, and has gone on to be the most-funded RPG project on the site to date (standing at $716,652 at the time of writing this, with 17 days left to run).

The Kult: Divinity Lost Kickstarter runs to 31st March 2016, and they are already ploughing through stretch goals!

The book comes in a number of different editions, all full-colour, all available at different reward tiers, and in some cases as add-ons.

The Illusion Edition is the standard version of the book that will be available for normal retail. This features an angel, bound in chains, and is a nice homage to the first edition cover. You can get this as a pledge level, or as an add-on.

The Enlightened Edition is like the standard copy, but has uncensored artwork (i.e. the angel is naked). While it will not be available in game stores, it will be available to purchase online once the game is released. You can get this as a pledge level, or as an add-on.

The Elysium Special Edition has a white cover with red logo, and the Inferno symbol in the background. It will not be available in game stores, it will be available to purchase online once the game is released. You can get this as a pledge level, or as an add-on.

One of the stretch goals that has already funded is the Bible Edition. This contains no artwork and is presented like a regular Bible. Reminds me a little of the Explorer Editions for Savage Worlds, just with more style! This is currently only an add-on item.

Then we get to my favourite section, the Limited Editions. The project creators stated that they wanted to make this a deluxe experience from the start, and they meant it.

The Metropolis and Inferno Collectors Editions are limited to 250 copies each. Metropolis is a black blue faux-leather cover with the Metropolis symbol highlighted in gold. Inferno is a brown red faux-leather cover with the Inferno symbol highlighted in gold. These are pledge-level only, not available as add-ons.

The Archons and Angels of Death Collectors Editions are limited to 20 copies (i.e. the 10 individual Archons, and the 10 individual Angels of Death). Like the Metropolis/Inferno Editions, Archons are black blue faux-leather and Angels of Death are brown red faux-leather. Each features the relevant faction symbol in the background, and then a gold-highlighted symbol unique for each Archon/Angel of Death above that, and the relevant name towards the bottom of the front cover. This means each one is unique. These are pledge-level only, not available as add-ons. You do get an Elysium Special Edition added in though for regular day to day use.

The big two are the Astaroth and Demiurge Editions, limited to 1 each. These will be unique. These are real leather covers, with choices of leather to be selected by those that pledge for them. All they have said so far is that they will have unique covers relating to Astaroth/the Demiurge. No image of mock-ups have been released yet – just a big question mark. You get two copies of the Elysium Special Edition added in though for regular day to day use.

Ahead of the Unknown Armies Kickstarter that is due to start sometime in March, I’ve earned some charges for the Bibliomancer in me by being Backer #1 and grabbing the Demiurge Edition, but the Astaroth Edition is still available at the time of writing this.

I’m really looking forward to seeing all the stretch goals they meet on this one. They’ve already got the Bible Edition, extra archetypes, and the Narrators screen. Just waiting for them to post more up now!

I’ll be back, no doubt when the Unknown Armies Kickstarter goes live. Until then, keep watching as the Illusion falls apart around us all!

Posted in Call of Cthulhu | 5 Comments